FLAT EARTH LUNACY blog, herbert kirszenberger
Herbert Kirszenberger was a simpleton and a scientist. A conformist and a follower in most respects, he had the utmost respect for symbols and certificates and associations of people far smarter than he.
Luckily for him, his moronic nature was easily obfuscated by his credentials. Things would likely have gone much, much smoother for him were it not for his savior complex, made all the more complicated by the fact that Herbert was a simpleton. Not that one could tell by looking.
For all his shortcomings, Herbert looked the part: he had the hair of Albert Einstein, the oblate spheroidal body of Neil De Grasse Tyson, and the demeanor of an old befuddled scientist lost in thought. That his thoughts were in fact lost, and he was merely attempting to locate them was missed by observers.
For all his incompetence, he was nonetheless treated as an expert in his chosen field of astronomy. Everything he did wrong was misinterpreted as "genius"; his mumbled word salads were hastily jotted down in notepads by lower-level scientists, thinking to extrapolate some arcane tidbit of astrophysics unapproachable by regular minds. His detailed images of a supernova were actually the result of zooming in on a traffic light. But nobody noticed and he received the prestigious NASA Astronomy Pic of the Year Award.
For his entire life, nearing seventy now, nobody suspected that Herbert Kerszenberger was a ridiculously inept moron. Perhaps it should be no wonder at all that he developed the need to save the world from unscientific ideas and thoughts.
"I hate the Internet," Herbert said, facing down a deluge of misinformation about the shape of the Earth. His doomscrolling continued, video after video promoting the Flat Earth question.
Herbert was considering adopting a superhero costume: spandex leotards, a cape, an SM for "Science Man" on the chest, and a pointed wizard's cap. Perhaps he could stop the Flat Earthers by exposing them in their lairs. Surely these weren't ordinary people consumed by the desire to express wrong information. There must be something more. Russian bots? Deep State funding? Herbert was determined to find out.
He remembered what his dear father, a scientist, said about the Kirszenberger family line back when he was five years old: "Herbert, you are descended from some of the most feared inquisitors of the Holy Inquisition. We must maintain the purity of the establishment worldview. It is up to science to prevent the heretics and misleaders to corrupt official doctrines and orthodoxies." Herbert was only five at the time but he remembered clearly, even now, sixty-five years later, the sense of urgency his father imparted on him.
"Papa, are you saying science must fight and win a holy war against the forces of ignorance and anti-science?" the young Herbert asked.
"Yes, Herbert," his father said, handing his son a box of science projects, "you're going to grow up to be the greatest defender of Science the world has ever known. Learn our ways, get your credentials, and then destroy the non-believers."
Herbert snapped out of his reverie. It was now 2021 and the world was in grave danger. Climate change, pandemics, space junk: the world needed a hero more now than ever. All he needed was a costume and a non-lethal weapon. "Father," he said, looking up at the ceiling of his laboratory. "I will not disappoint you." He went to Amazon to find a costume.
The plan: stop misinformation at its source, by all means necessary. To allow it to continue would be to condemn the Earth and her residents to certain doom. Or so Herbert thought. And since nobody would dare contradict his expertise, his increasingly strange and erratic behaviors all got a pass. His antics, his moronic preventable mishaps, and his nonsensical interpretation of the most basic facts of nature were largely ignored and therefore enabled.
It was nearing midday when our hero Herbert set off to disprove the Flat Earthers once and for all. Their ridonkulous theory was gaining traction among the youth in the absence of rigorous scientific training in the classrooms. He spotted a mask on the ground and angrily swiped it up, putting it in his back pocket.
"Covid may not wipe us out, but the resultant stupidity will," he said to the mailman that just happened to be driving up. He was properly double-masked and helmeted for space junk protection.
"Hello, Mr. Kirszenberger. I have a package for you. It's a heavy one." He brought out a dolly and wheeled a box out of the back of the mail truck.
"Yes, yes. There's lots of science in that box," Herbert said, nodding. "Glad to see you're being scientific and wearing the helmet, in addition to the double mask."
The mail-carrier didn't appear to notice the lack of masks or helmets on the scientist who droned on with facts such as, "Every day thousands of fish, birds, ducks, and the occasional whale washed up on the shores of the world's beaches, tangled in man's improperly disposed of biomedical waste."
A gentle breeze stirred the leaves carrying down tree pollen into the path of Herbet's naked face. He stooped down for the box but stopped to sneeze, sending spittle onto the masked face of the mail-carrier, who stood aghast.
"Bless you," he mumbled before walking back to the vehicle, leaving the inconsiderate superspreader to do his scientific work. (Later that night, after an especially grueling shift, the mail-carrier touched the steering wheel with the same hand that later came into contact with his eye when he rubbed them while yawning from tiredness. It was at this moment that the Covid22 strain carried by the scientist Herbert Kirzenberger passed into the blood vessels lining his eye and inner eyelid. He couldn't breathe, stopped the truck, and died alone in front of someone's driveway.)
Hebert opened the box which contained a telescope, a white smock, zip ties, a stun-gun, several vials of knock-out drugs. He attached the items to his tool belt, put on the smock, strapped the telescope over his shoulder, and set out for the nearest tree.
The neighborhood he lived in was not exactly conducive to this sort of experiment. The first tree he attempted, a cherry tree, wasn't high enough to see the Earth's curvature. The second one, a maple, gave him the altitude he needed to see the horizon above the surrounding homes and landscape. The problem here was visibility; too many leaves in the way. The third option was the especially tall evergreen behind the 7-11.
He passed the mail truck on the way to the convenience store and noticed the mail-carrier slumped over the wheel.
"Lazy," he said, shaking his head. He sneezed again, reached into his back pocket for the used mask, and blew his nose noisily into it, saturating it with an advanced and deadly strain of Covid unlike anything to the world has ever seen. But why didn't it affect him, you may ask?
Simple. Unbeknownst to anyone but his black market vax dealer, Herbert was an addict. It wasn't high from the vaccine he sought, but rather the rush of safety one feels, the sense of being enveloped in a womb of pure love and protection. A side effect of multiple dangerous and experimental vaccines is mutations. Regular healthy people could die nearly instantly with no symptoms, and worse, these mutations remain alive in the corpse and go into remission until once again in contact with a living being. In layman's terms: zombie-viruses.
The ignorant and dangerous superspreader arrived at the 7/11 and stared up at the evergreen. It was slender, tall, and very well maintained. Every branch was of uniform thickness and length. A ladder had been bolted into the side of it he could see. It was surrounded by a chain-link fence with barbed wire on top.
He would need a means of scaling the fence if he was to climb the tree, scope the horizon, and spot the curve. "I'm getting too old for this shit," he said. He entered the 7-11 and went straight for the coffee. "Excuse me, manager?"
The masked clerk shook her head. She was overweight and wore a Flat Earth t-shirt. "What do you want? Why do you come in here without a mask?"
"Science, woman. I have to access the fenced-off area behind the building," he said authority, pointing to a badge on his smock. "Gravity debunks flat earth by the way."
"Cleveland Dinosaur Science Society? What kind of authority does that give you?" she sighed. "You're not an astronaut."
"The flat earthers are effing up society. Give me a ladder and I'll be on my way." He presumptively walked out the back door. She followed, stopped at the janitor's closet, and met him outside with the ladder.
"You really need to mask up," she said. "And you need to pay for your coffee."
He placed the ladder against the fence and climbed up. "Lady, you have no idea what the world is facing. Leave me to do my work." She slammed the back door, leaving him atop the ladder. His waist was level with the top of the fence but the razor-wire was still in the way. From here he could see that the tree was in fact a cleverly disguised 5-G tower.
He stood atop the fence, one leg on either side of the bladed coils. From there, he pulled the ladder the rest of the way up and leaned it against the "trunk" of the 5-G tower. He stalked catlike up the ladder and then took hold of the ladder rungs on the fake tree.
From atop the tower, he could see the distant peaks, maybe one hundred miles away. Wrapping his spindly old legs around a metal branch, he unslung the telescope. "Now, time to put the Flat earth theory to rest." He pointed it at the most distant peak. Then beyond. He could faintly see the outline of some windmills.
"Hmm. Those are surprisingly vertical, considering their distance."
He did the calculation in his head. Eight inches per mile squared times a hundred miles put these towers over the curve. Accounting for the height of the 5G tower, it's not all that surprising to see them, however, they aren't leaning away.
Confused, but not deterred, he continued to make observations.
Perhaps the setting sun would give him the opportunity to debunk the seeming flatness of the globe as seen from the human perspective. The arrogant and foul-mouthed jerk remained perched atop the tower waiting for a chance to document the terminator line of the setting sun or perhaps to witness an International Space Station flyover.
Consumed with hate and bereft of common sense, the jackass found himself stranded, more or less.
"Hey, sir? You need to mask up. People are dropping dead like flies around here!" It was a police officer. He appeared to be off duty, but still in uniform.
"Really officer. I'm immune. Trust me." Herbert said, dismissively as always.
"Haven't you heard? The mail-man was killed by the mystery super-spreader!" the officer replied.
"You're not suggesting?" Hebert said, suddenly aware of the implications. "Are you saying that I killed the mail-carrier and all those other deaths attributed to the mystery super-spreader? Do you even believe this media-driven drivel?" He grew uncomfortable. Could his vaccines be making him infectious? Who could he discuss this with? His dealer was working behind a proxy and his drugs were always drone dropped in the dead of night.
He shook his head. "It was always going to come to this," he said to himself, removing a pistol from his smock. "In the name of science, my work has to continue." He pointed the weapon at the officer.....